The Open and Shut Door Dilemma

By
J. Wilfred Johnson
April 28th, 1976

Transcribed from C/Ds #47, #48 
October 7, 2013 thru October 16, 2013

(Wilfred) Now this evening I’m going to tackle a subject that is difficult and I’m going to have to appeal to your tolerant natures and open minds and high intellects. I hope that you will not feel that we’re moving into a topic that we should leave alone. There are many things that we have been teaching down through the years in our denomination as doctrines, we’ve been teaching them as units, segments, little compartments, each one in it’s own particular place. But we have been paying little attention to how these various segments of doctrine are coordinated, how they are interrelated, and how they tie together. Some of you folks have been with me now for about fifty meetings as I figure, at least. About thirty of these two-hour sessions, which is about sixty hours, and you have been in various other meetings and Sabbath School classes and what not and in all of these I have been bringing various parts of these segments and from time to time I have tried to coordination some of these together.

I think we’re reaching a stage now where maybe we ought to be putting the whole picture together and I apologize to those of you who are recent joiner-uppers in our Group. You may possibly find yourself flying at loose ends in spots because of the fact that you have not had the opportunity to get all of the parts that we formally discussed. I will keep relating back to things that we have said before, but I will be doing it very hastily and casually because if I go back and do it thoroughly we just never cover the integrating parts, I hope I am making myself reasonably clear.

We have not talked too much about the sanctuary yet and I’m going to say a little bit about that tonight and I’m also afraid that I am going to bring up questions and problems that I will not be prepared to answer tonight and this is where I appeal to your tolerance. I am not going to say that I can’t answer them, some of them I can answer but there are some that I cannot, yet, and I say “Yet" because I think there is an answer to every problem that shows up in the books. And down through the last thirty some years there hasn’t a year gone by but what I haven’t stumbled into a number of answers that I didn’t have before and I would expect that the Lord will continue to do that and He will do that for all of us. He has told us that He is going to send his Spirit of Truth to guide us into the whole picture, all truth. So things that we cannot answer tonight let’s not get too upset about them. In Sister White’s day there were things that she couldn’t answer and I’m going to deal with one of those problems. Some of the brethren and herself had certain ideas and then she received a vision which made it necessary for them to change their ideas but at the same time it brought up a problem which to this day she has not answered. I should say until the day of her death. In all her writings I have seen no evidence that she understood it. But as a faithful prophet she wrote it the way she saw it. She was criticized, bombarded, and I’ll confess that the thing that brings this to my attention at this particular point is another bombardment that she is getting from somebody down south of the border and the thing is a little critical of the fact that in the published books the thing has not been acknowledged with all its implications but it has been cautiously dealt with.

Well, I think we have to go along with this. There are things that we don’t understand now, what do we do about it? Make a big fuss or do we do the best we can under the circumstances and move on from there? I have more respect for Sister White after I read some of these problems that arose in her experience and her humility in submitting to opinions of people and the brethren and putting her own views down or expressing the thing that the Lord showed her even though she gets static for it, not agitating the thing, just trying to move forward as smoothly as possible until such time as God would open up the total picture. And in this particular thing I am not so sure that that picture was opened up before she died. And I’m not so sure that if I give you the whole picture that some of you will even want to accept it. But we have to face the facts. At least we have to find out what’s in here. What does the Word say? Then if you feel there is enough evidence to draw a conclusion, fine. That’s what they did back there. And if that conclusion is not correct then be ready to change it when further evidence comes and she gives us that instruction and I have read you that some time back. Don’t close your mind even if it is one of our doctrines that we have taught for many years. Don’t close your mind she says.

There is only one exception to that and that is the pillars of our faith. She speaks about the pillars of our faith, these things will never change. Things like the Sabbath, they’re not gong to change that. That is a revealed truth and it’s complete. Yes, it is gong to be proclaimed more fully during the Loud Cry. And that more fully I’m sure has more that one meaning. It not only will be broadcast in a wider area more fully but to a deeper extent it will be understood more fully. But the basic doctrine of the Sabbath will not change. The law of God will not change and the state of the dead will not change, and so on. And the sanctuary she saw in vision but there are some things about the sanctuary I could bring up questions that I know that you folks could not answer. And there are students of the Bible who are going to bring those questions to you when things get a little hotter than they are now. And she warns us to be prepared to give an answer straight from the books and that’s one reason I feel I should call this to your attention. We mustn’t get too smug in thinking that we have all the truth and we understand it all and nobody can challenge us. Do you understand? We’ve got to be prepared to be challenged and to be put into a corner and admit that we don’t understand something. I’ll do the best I can to provide you with the information and I may even go a little ways towards suggesting the solutions to some of these things but at the present moment I don’t feel that I can go too far in that because I don’t feel we are really ready to take some of these thoughts. We are going to have to discipline ourselves to be very open-minded before we get through with God’s program. Some of the statements she has made were not made for no cause at all they were made for a very definite reason.

Well, let me read now from Great Controversy page 426. And I might as well tell you that we are going to center this around “The Shut Door Theory” if you have ever heard of it and maybe you’ve never heard of it. It is another reason why you should read that little book, Early Writings.

“The coming of Christ as our high priest to the most holy place, for the cleansing of the sanctuary, brought to view in Daniel 8:14;” That’s one, here’s the second. “The coming of the Son of man to the Ancient of Days, as presented in Daniel 7:13,” That’s two. “And the coming of the Lord to His temple, foretold by Malachi,” Do you remember that one? Coming suddenly to his temple? That’s three. “Are descriptions of the same event; and this is also represented by the coming of the bridegroom to the marriage, described by Christ in the parable of the ten virgins, of Matthew 25.” That’s four. Four things she says are all a description of the same event. Shall we look at Matthew 25 first?

This is the parable of the ten virgins and you remember how that five of them had no oil for their lamps and the other five did. They were all waiting for the bridegroom and while the bridegroom tarried they all slumbered and slept then at midnight there was a cry made, behold, the bridegroom cometh go ye out to meet him. Now this parable had an application to the experience of God’s people prior to 1844 and it is termed the Midnight Cry which went out to warn people that the bridegroom was coming. And they interpreted that to mean that Christ was coming from heaven to this earth. Do you understand? And they had their time set for 1843 at first and then later to 1844. And then there was the great disappointment. Now this was called the Midnight Cry. And in Sister Whites first vision where she sees the people of God moving on up the path there was a bright light behind them lighting the path and that light was the Midnight Cry.

Now when the Midnight Cry went out all these virgins woke up and some of them had oil and some of them did not. So, it goes on to say, and while these foolish ones went to buy their oil the bridegroom came and they that were ready went in with Him to the marriage. And the door was shut. Now, what does that mean?

(John) The door that was shut was the door to the holy place.

(Wilfred) Where did He go? Where did He go to the...?

(John) To the most holy.

(Wilfred) Wait a minute now, let’s read it here. Read it, somebody.

(A woman in the audience) To the marriage.

(Wilfred) To the marriage. Do you have any idea what that means? (A long silence) Seventh-day Adventists that have studied hard.

(John) The marriage we are told in Christ’s Object Lessons is the union of humanity with divinity.

(Wilfred) Keep going, let’s get all the thoughts we can get here. Christ the bridegroom went into the marriage and the door was shut. What would you do if someone challenged you on it? Hummm, I’m challenging you right now. Are you ready to tackle it?

(Man in the audience) Probation would be closed, the shutting of the door. Christ’s marriage would be to his church. Taking his church the same time.

(Wilfred) You’re getting really close to this thing. What did they interpret it to mean?

(Same woman) Christ was coming literally.
 
(Wilfred) That Christ was coming literally and in some mystical form the marriage would take place. You remember what Paul says in Ephesians there about the marriage of Christ to his church, this great mystery? He is talking about the marriage of Christ to his church. They twain shall one flesh. We have discussed this haven’t we? The restoration of the body of Christ in his people, his inheritance and his saints. But what did the pioneers interpret this to mean?

(John) The second coming of Christ? There was a time when they felt that under the Millerite movement that there was a teaching that went forth that probation was closed at that time.

(Wilfred) Right.

(Same woman) Those that didn’t accept the message were lost and the door was shut forever.

(Wilfred) Right.

(John) And I think there was a teaching that they taught that there was no more sense to call people to repentance and they were to get ready for the Lord...

(Wilfred) All right, we’ve got the questions now maybe we could move into the material.

I’ll read what she says. "For a time after the disappointment in 1844 I did hold in common with the Advent body that the door of mercy was then forever closed to the world. This position was taken before my first vision" God had not yet enlightened her, she was just a young girl remember? "Before my first vision was given. It was the light given me of God that corrected our error and enabled us to see the true position." A Word to the Little Flock.

Now, I’m going to read from a letter that she wrote to Joseph Bates. July 13, 1847. Just before I do let me say that it was in December after the October disappointment that she received her first vision. She said in that statement I just read that that vision corrected their error. This is what it says in the first vision, “I turned to look for the Advent people in the world, but could not find them, when a voice said to me, "Look again, and look a little higher." At this I raised my eyes, and saw a straight and narrow path, cast up high above the world. On this path the Advent people were traveling to the city, which was at the farther end of the path. They had a bright light set up behind them at the beginning of the path, which an angel told me was the Midnight Cry.” Early Writings  page 14.

All right now, this Midnight Cry was a bright light. And William Miller had been preaching for about twelve years the second coming of Jesus in 1843 and then in 1844, and they all believed that He was coming to this earth. It was a message from God and it didn’t pan out. Now, are you prepared for an experience like that? So what did they do? They came to some conclusions. Obviously it wasn’t right they made a mistake someplace, something was wrong. Why did God permit them to think erroneously for all those years? Well God had a purpose for this, He had a reason for this, God does nothing without a good reason. And I am convinced right now that some of us have some ideas that aren’t correct and someday we are going to have to change them, are you prepared to do it? Or will you be stubborn when the evidence comes in front of you and you say; I don’t believe it, like some of them did back there. They were stubborn, they wouldn’t believe it. Because it didn’t happen it is all wrong, it wasn’t right. And they turned away from the faith and Sister White concluded that these people who gave up the thing, the door of mercy had closed for them. But they went one step further, that the door of mercy had closed for the whole world because they were convinced that Christ was coming at that time but they just misinterpreted something or other. But it must be the end of something, you see. They were confused.

Now this vision was supposed to clear it up according to her statement.

I’ll read the rest of it; “This light shone all along the path and gave light for their feet so that they might not stumble. If they kept their eyes fixed on Jesus, who was just before them, leading them to the city, they were safe. But soon some grew weary, and said the city was a great way off, and they expected to have entered it before. Then Jesus would encourage them by raising His glorious right arm, and from His arm came a light which waved over the Advent band, and they shouted, "Alleluia!" Others rashly denied the light behind them and said that it was not God that had led them out so far. The light behind them went out, leaving their feet in perfect darkness, and they stumbled and lost sight of the mark and of Jesus, and fell off the path down into the dark and wicked world below. Soon we heard the voice of God like many waters, which gave us the day and hour of Jesus' coming. The living saints, 144,000 in number, knew and understood the voice, while the wicked thought it was thunder and an earthquake. When God spoke the time, He poured upon us the Holy Ghost, and our faces began to light up and shine with the glory of God, as Moses' did when he came down from Mount Sinai."

"The 144,000 were all sealed and perfectly united. On their foreheads was written, God, New Jerusalem, and a glorious star containing Jesus' new name. At our happy, holy state the wicked were enraged, and would rush violently up to lay hands on us" And she goes on to talk about the final movements.

Now what was cleared up here? What did that vision clear up? Can you see anything in there? Well, that’s what somebody is saying right now, what did it clear up?

She had another vision a little latter, one in February. I think at this point I’ll read part of this letter she wrote to Joseph Bates in 1847. She had another vision in February 1845 and she had another one in March 1849 that deals with this topic. I hope that we can follow this pattern here and get the things I am trying to bring out. You might be interested in the letter just to see what this girl wrote like when she was writing casually to somebody else.

All right, this is written from Gorham Maine.

Dear Brother Bates,                                                                                                   July 13, 1847  

“As James is at work and sisters are from home thought I would employ myself in writing a line to you. My health is quite good for me. My faith is still strong that that very same Jesus that ascended up into heaven will so come in like manner as He went up, and that very, very soon. I have had many trials of late; discouragement at times has laid so fast hold upon me it seemed impossible to shake it off. But thank God, Satan has not got the victory over me yet, and by the grace of God he never shall. I know and feel my weakness, but I have laid hold upon the strong arm of Jehovah, and I can say today I know that my Redeemer liveth, and if He lives I shall live also. Oh how good it would be to meet with a few of like precious faith to exhort and comfort one another with words of holy cheer from the word of God. The sheep are now scattered, but thank God, they are about to be gathered to a good pasture.”

“Oh how sweet it will be to meet all the blood-washed throng in the city of our God. 'Tis then we'll sing the song of Moses and the Lamb as we march through the gates into the city, bearing the palms of victory and wearing the crowns of glory.”

“Brother Bates, you write in a letter to James something about the Bridegroom's coming, as stated in the first published visions. By the letter you would like to know whether I had light on the Bridegroom's coming before I saw it in vision. I can readily answer, No. The Lord showed me the travail of the Advent band and Midnight Cry in December, but He did not show me the Bridegroom's coming until February following.” You got that? She did not see the truth about the Bridegrooms coming until February. "Perhaps you would like to have me give a statement in relation to both visions. At the time I had the vision of the Midnight Cry I had given it up in the past and thought it future,” Now that’s between October 18, 1844 and December 1844 she had given up the Midnight Cry in the past and thought it was in the future. What does that mean? That it was still to come. The door was still open that probation was still open, see? Is that what it means? If the Midnight Cry had been finished in the past then the door was shut and there was no more salvation for sinners. Now she says, at the time I had the vision of the Midnight Cry she had given up that idea and has reverted to the idea that the door was open yet and that the Midnight Cry was still something future. Do you see? You didn’t get it? Immediately after 1844 she said the door was shut and most of the folk believe the same thing. That there was no more salvation for sinners. But by the time she got down to December she had changed her mind and thought that the Midnight Cry was still in the future.

(Another man in the audience) She also said the light was still shining on the path.

(Wilfred) Good, I’m glad you spotted that. That’s the only thing I can see in that first vision that clears this at all. The fact that that Midnight Cry light was still shining on the path. Do you understand? Which means that it was still an effective thing. And just while I think of it let's not close our minds to the fact that the Midnight Cry may still be repeated. She says, study Revelation because history will be repeated. And with what we’ve discussed before can you not see what that would mean? The marriage of the Lamb is going to be consummated before the close of probation. He is to come to his new temple of saints and there is to be a marriage union a restoration of the body of Christ. Do you understand? Any declaration calling attention to the fact the bridegroom is going to come to his temple, to his saints, to his bride if you please is a repetition of the Midnight Cry. Now, is this going to happen in the future or is it not? Christ is not going to come physically to this earth to receive his saints until He has come by his Spirit in the marriage union under the terms of the New Covenant to retrace his character in his people. Do you understand? And that takes place before probation closes. So there is going to be another Midnight Cry with a shut door at the close of probation. And I’m going to read it to you in a moment. Back there the door that was shut was the door to the holy apartment. She got that cleared out in the vision of 1849 and the door that was open up was the door to the most holy. So there was still an open door but it was not the same open door. And that’s the point I don’t think any of those pioneers understood, even her. She never deals in this in that sense at all. It’s just the fact that the door of mercy is still open to those who have not heard the message and rejected it. That’s all she says that I can find. She does not delineate the fact that it was the first door that was shut and the second door that was open and that there is a distinction there. She gives way to the idea that the door is still open; the door of mercy is still open. Then she says, but I still saw that the door to the holy apartment was shut and the door to the most holy was open and no man could shut that and no man could open the other. And she leaves it at that.

Now, I wonder if you can’t see that the first Midnight Cry went out when the door to the holy apartment was shut but to the most holy was opened. Can you see that? And you know already I hope what goes on in the most holy but we’re going to talk about it if we have time enough. But there is coming an end to the probationary period during which the most holy door is open and prior to that the second Midnight Cry announcing the coming of the Holy Ghost to his temple in the out pouring of the latter rain will take place and the marriage will be consummated. And there will be people today who will go with him to the marriage. Oh yes I know, there is a contradiction here and I’ll deal with that too. I’ve got it slated for tonight.

You’ve got a question?

(John) No, You stated that you didn’t think Sister White understood what she was writing about. And she wrote in Great Controversy even the prophets who were favored with his special illumination of the Spirit did not fully comprehend and the import of the revelations committed to them.

(Wilfred) Yes, it does happen. But she faithfully wrote what she saw and I thank her for that. She didn’t move an inch. She backed up to be harmonious with brethren but she never let go of the truth she saw. I saw it and there it is and I’ll write it and she did. And I’m glad she did because if she hadn’t written it we today would not have gotten the true picture. That’s what would have happened.

Now, she says, “At the time I had the vision of the Midnight Cry I had given it up in the past and thought it future, as also most of the band had.” She called the little group the band. “I know not what time J. Turner got out his paper.” Now this Turner I’ll tell you had the same thought that Sister White was shown in vision. But she didn’t want to tell her vision because she thought Turner believed like the rest of the band, so she was afraid to tell it. And when she did tell it she found out that Turner had already written a paper on it and had presented it at the meeting that the Lord has asked her to tell it to and she didn’t do it. And Turner had a paper already written and the Lord used him as a substitute to give it that same meeting. And when Sister White found out about that she was humiliated and she went back to God and asked his forgiveness and at the next meeting she gave her vision because there was only a few people at the first meeting the next time she gave it just as it was and they accepted it.

Well, let me read on. “I knew he had one out and one was in the house, but I knew not what was in it, for I did not read a word in it. I had been, and still was very sick, I took no interest in reading, for it injured my head and made me nervous. After I had the vision and God gave me light, He bade me deliver it to the band, but I shrank from it. I was young, and I thought they would not receive it from me. I disobeyed the Lord, and instead of remaining at home, where the meeting was to be that night, I got in a sleigh in the morning and rode three or four miles and there I found J. T. (Joseph Turner). He merely inquired how I was and if I was in the way of my duty. I said nothing, for I knew I was not. I passed up to the chamber and did not see him again for two hours, when he came up, asked if I was to be at meeting that night. I told him, No. He said he wanted to hear my vision and thought it duty for me to go home. I told him I should not. He said no more, but went away. I thought, and told those around me, if I went I should have to come out against his views,” She told her vision and though it would be against his views and their views, see? “Thinking he believed with the rest. I had not told any of them what God had shown me, and I did not tell them in what I should cut across his track.” She didn’t tell him what thing would be opposite of what he thought. Why was she shrinking from doing her duty?

(John) She didn’t want to be in variance with her brethren.

(Wilfred) Right, she thought that she would be cutting across what they believed and they would not accept it.

“All that day I suffered much in body and mind. It seemed that God had forsaken me entirely. I prayed the Lord if he would give me strength to ride home that night, the first opportunity I would deliver the message He had given me. He did give me strength and I rode home that night. Meeting had been done some time, and not a word was said by any of the family about the meeting.” No body said a word, everybody was quiet.

“Very early next morning J. T. (Joseph Turner) called, said he was in haste going out of the city in a short time, and wanted I should tell him all that God had shown me in vision. It was with fear and trembling I told him all. After I had got through he said he had told out the same last evening.” In other words, I gave that same view last evening to the meeting. That’s what he said.

“I was rejoiced, for I expected he was coming out against me, for all the while I had not heard any one say what he believed.” You see, Sister White thought that this Turner would be contrary to her view when all the time he was agreeing with her. “He said the Lord had sent him to hear me talk the evening before, but as I would not, he meant his children should have the light in some way, so he took him.” Do you see that? She ran away from home over to his place and he asked her, are you in the way of the Lord's duty? Are you not going to the meeting tonight? See, he knew that he was to go to the meeting to hear what the Lord had to say through her. But he never told her that. He didn’t give any orders to the Lord’s prophet. If she wasn’t going, he let it go at that. But he already had a paper of his own written, He didn’t know that her vision verified what he had at that time. But he went to the meeting and Sister White wasn’t there so he couldn’t hear what he was supposed to hear from her but he gave his own paper and that was the very thing that the Lord had given Sister White to give to the meeting which she didn’t do. Do you see how the Lord taught her a lesson?

(A man in the audience) It also helped to strengthen the message...

(Wilfred) Yes, So she said, “There were but few out when he talked, so the next meeting I told my vision, and the band, believing my visions from God, received what God bade me to deliver to them.”

“The view about the Bridegroom's coming I had about the middle of February, 1845.”

“While in Exeter, Maine in meeting with Israel Dammon, James, and many others, many of them did not believe in a shut door. I suffered much at the commencement of the meeting. Unbelief seemed to be on every hand.” Now do you see the transition? Previously she had been shown that the midnight Light was still shinning on the path. Now she says that when she met with these other folks in February she suffered much at the commencement of the meeting. Many of these people at the meeting did not believe in a shut door. What’s she talking about? Well, The bridegroom coming here says that the door was shut, see? And she still had the conviction that there was a shut door because the Bible said so. In spite of her vision that the light was still shinning there was a shut door. Now she said, “Unbelief seemed to be on every hand. There was one sister there that was called, very spiritual. She had traveled and been a powerful preacher the most of the time for twenty years. She had been truly a mother in Israel. But a division had risen in the band on the shut door. She had great sympathy, this woman, “And could not believe the door was shut.” I mean the Lord’s too merciful, He wouldn’t close the door. That’s the way this lady thought. And Sister White felt badly because there was a division in the band over this thing. She said, “(I had known nothing of their differences.)” Now I didn’t state that right. I misinterpreted this, I didn’t read it correctly, She had a bad time but here she states that it wasn’t because she knew of the difference at that time, it was because of her own feelings. “Sister Durben got up to talk. I felt very, very sad.” And then she found out about the difference. “At length my soul seemed to be in an agony, and while she was talking I fell from my chair to the floor. It was then that I had a view of Jesus rising from His mediatorial throne and going to the holiest as Bridegroom to receive His kingdom.” Now what did she see? Jesus moved from the holy apartment into the most holy apartment as the bridegroom to receive his Kingdom. Do you remember in Revelation that it says I will show you the bride of the Lamb, the Lamb’s wife and what was she shown? The New Jerusalem, the Kingdom. Now we’ve talked about that a little. But the Bible says that his Kingdom is where?

(John) In his saints.

(Wilfred) In his saints. So when He goes into the most holy to receive his Kingdom, what is He receiving? Let me put it very briefly; I’ve gone over it before. He is receiving again the total allegiance of his people voluntarily. He lost his Kingdom when Lucifer decided not to respect Him. He would never use force so the only way He could hold his Kingdom and maintain his ruler-ship over his people was if they respected Him voluntarily, can you see that? Now as long as his people are disobeying his commandments and not serving Him He has no way to recover his Kingdom, without using force which He won’t do, except to win the restoration of allegiance in the hearts of his people. Can you see that? Now it is during the latter rain experience. While Christ is in the most holy of the heavenly sanctuary that the cleansing of the temple is to take place. He’s cleansing the sanctuary is He not? And she tells us in Great Controversy that, I think it is John, while He is doing that in heaven there is to be a parallel work of cleansing the soul temple here on earth. Can you get it? Now He is going to come suddenly to his temple as in Malachi chapter three. She says it’s the very same experience that is talked about in connection with this parable. I read that from Great Controversy a few minutes ago. The messenger of the covenant, Malachi three, is going to come suddenly to his temple of saints. What for? To purify and cleanse them and how are they identified? As the sons of Levi. And who are the sons of Levi? Those who chose to stand with Moses when he destroyed that golden calf. He said, who is on the Lord’s side? Come and stand with me. And who came? The sons of Levi. The cry goes out today Brother and Sister, who is on the Lord’s side? Who is ready to stand with God today and get rid of the idols? They are the sons of Levi and what’s He going to do with them? He is going to come suddenly to that temple, to the most holy of that temple to purify and cleanse it. Got the picture?

He is going to receive his Kingdom, now Sister White saw this in vision. All she saw was that Jesus rose up from the holy and moved into the most holy. That’s what she saw and that’s what she wrote. To receive his Kingdom. The rest of it comes as you continue to study and pick up all the pieces and put them together. It’s all there.

“They were all deeply interested in the view. They all said it was entirely new to them. The Lord worked in mighty power setting the truth home to their hearts. Sister Durben knew what the power of the Lord was, for she had felt it many times; and a short time after I fell, she was struck down, and fell to the floor, crying to God to have mercy on her. When I came out of vision, my ears were saluted with Sister Durben's singing and shouting with a loud voice.” You may question these manifestations. In the early days God talked in symbolisms to a great extent and He gave manifestations, He did many miracles and this type of thing. But today allegiance to God is not going to be based on manifestations, and miracles, and spectacular and fantastic things, as such. It is going to be based on sound solid conviction of truth. God is going to have a rational, sensible, people operating his Kingdom. These are experiences that came to these people because in those days they meant something. God was working here against great odds and He gave these manifestations, for instance when Ellen White would go into vision she would fade out and cry glory, glory, glory, and there were certain rituals that seem to follow each time.

(John) And her movements couldn’t be stopped....

(Wilfred) And her breathing stopped and these various things and she became sometimes ridged and then her eyes would open and she didn’t blink. She lost her strength and then it was renewed and so on.

Now let me clue you in; God can give a vision to a person without any of that stuff and He does. Not all visions are accompanied by all of those manifestations.

(John) They were needed at that time to confirm the faith of the little scattered flock.

(Wilfred) That’s correct. They looked for that type of thing to be a manifestation of the miraculous and the genuine, you understand? But she tells us and warns us that today and increasingly we cannot put our trust in such manifestations and miracles because the devil is counterfeiting everything God does. So, don’t look for that type of thing. And when that type of thing happens don’t think that it is the Lord, don’t base your conviction on truth on those things. Because you can’t, you have got to base your conviction of truth on what it says in the books.

(John) Just to verify that, later on in her experience and in Selected Messages there is a whole chapter written which says, "Miracles Not A Test of God’s Favor", there is a whole chapter on that.

(Wilfred) Right, you can read it at your leisure.

“Most of them received the vision, and were settled upon the shut door.” Got that? This was the vision in February. She got the vision, she told the vision and they were settled upon the shut door. What shut door?

(John) To the holy place.

(Wilfred) To the holy place. Now, she doesn’t say anything about the other door, yet. “Previous to this I had no light on the coming of the Bridegroom, but had expected him to this earth to deliver his people on the tenth day of the seventh month. I did not hear a lecture or a word in any way relating to the Bridegroom's going to the holiest.”

“I had but very few privileges in 1842, 3 and 4. My sisters both went to the camp meetings in New Hampshire and Maine, while my health prevented me from going to but one, in Maine. I know the light I received came from God, it was not taught me by man. I knew not how to write so that others could read it till God gave me my visions. I went to school but very little on account of my health. I do not think I went to school a day after I was twelve years old, and did not go then but a few days at a time, when sickness would cause me to take my bed for weeks and sometimes for months. The first I wrote anything that could be called writing was after I had been sick the prayer of faith was put up for me, and healing (here the sheet ends, and the reminder of the letter is gone.)” So I can’t read it to you.

But I’m concerned about this shut door.

Now let me read from Early Writings, this is the vision she got on Sabbath March 24, 1849. That’s four and a half years after the 1844 disappointment.

     “Sabbath, March 24, 1849, we had a sweet and very interesting meeting with the brethren at Topsham, Maine. The Holy Ghost was poured out upon us, and I was taken off in the Spirit to the city of the living God. Then I was shown that the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ relating to the shut door could not be separated,” Now how does that tie in? Can I read on? “And that the time for the commandments of God to shine out with all their importance, and for God's people to be tried on the Sabbath truth, was when the door was opened in the most holy place in the heavenly sanctuary, where the ark is, in which are contained the ten commandments.” Does that make sense? There is the ark in there in the most holy. Now the door is opened up in the most holy. There is the commandments, there is the Sabbath to shine out now as a test for God’s people. I want you to notice that she talks about the time after 1844 as the testing time. Testing for what?

(A man in the audience) Allegiance?

Wilfred) Yes.

What is Christ doing in the most holy apartment? Well, we said cleansing the sanctuary, He is doing two things and they’re tied together. Cleansing the sanctuary and what’s the other thing? The investigative judgment. The cases of all from the time of Adam on down are to be examined.

(John) And sometimes during that time it moves from the cases of the dead to the cases of the living she said.

(Wilfred) And when it does what happens to the living? They are to be...

(John) Sealed or rejected.

(Wilfred) They are to be first?

(John) Settled in the truth.

(Wilfred) Tested. What is the test? The commandments of God, your allegiance and what is the Flag?

(Several voices) The Sabbath.

(Wilfred) Now, I’m going to throw out the question but I’m not going to answer it. The testing time started right after 1844 and it began with the ancients. Well, we’ll leave that for the time being.

Now the next sentence; “This door was not opened until the mediation of Jesus was finished in the holy place of the sanctuary in 1844. Then Jesus rose up and shut the door of the holy place, and opened the door into the most holy, and passed within the second veil, where He now stands by the ark, and where the faith of Israel now reaches.”

“I saw that Jesus had shut the door of the holy place, and no man can open it; and that He had opened the door into the most holy, and no man can shut it (Rev. 3:7,8);” That’s pretty positive isn’t it? “And that since Jesus has opened the door into the most holy place, which contains the ark, the commandments have been shining out to God's people,” Who have they been shinning out to?         

(John) God’s people.

(Wilfred) God’s people, “And they are being tested on the Sabbath question.”

“I saw that the present test on the Sabbath could not come until the mediation of Jesus in the holy place was finished” I want you to note that statement. “The present test on the Sabbath could not come” She saw this and she wrote it faithfully, she didn’t explain it, she just wrote it. I saw that the present test on the Sabbath could not come until the mediation of Jesus in the holy place was finished “And He had passed within the second veil; therefore Christians who fell asleep before the door was opened into the most holy, when the Midnight Cry was finished, at the seventh month, 1844, and who had not kept the true Sabbath, now rest in hope; for they had not the light and the test on the Sabbath which we now have since that door was opened.” Is that clear? Now who else has not had the Sabbath light since 1844?

(John) The people in the nominal protestant churches.

(Wilfred) The nominal churches and the rest of the world that hasn’t had the light. Then, is the door shut for them?

(A man in the audience) No!

(Wilfred) No! Which door is it that is open however?

(Same man) The most holy.

(Wilfred) That’s right. Not the Holy. Now, I want to throw out another question, and I’m not guaranteeing to answer it tonight. On the Day of Atonement, which she verifies this is, 1844 starts the Day of Atonement, the anti-typical Day of Atonement. On the Day of Atonement the procedure was that the Priest went into the outer apartment, shut the door and then opened the door to the most holy and went into the most holy to stand before the Ark. Now the door to the holy apartment was shut all during the time he was in there. During the time he was in there no sins were transferred into the sanctuary but the sins that were already recorded in the sanctuary were being cleansed out of the sanctuary by the same sprinkling of blood that brought them in. It was during the other 359 days of the year (They had a different year than ours) every day there was a morning and evening sacrifice for the sins of the people. Right? In addition to that anyone who sinned and he became conscience of his sin had to bring an animal or doves or what all, and he had to slay that in the outer court, not in the sanctuary itself, in the court and the priest would take the blood into the sanctuary and sprinkle it on the horns of the altar and... I am not up on all the details of the sanctuary service. That’s what I’m concerned about right now. But by this procedure the sins were transferred to the sanctuary. And you must remember that this is all symbolism, it’s all symbolic. You can parallel this with the experience of a human being if you want to do it. When you sin that sin is recorded here. That’s one temple. There are four temples, tabernacles. That’s one. When you become a member of the family of God you become one with Christ. Christ is the true tabernacle she says. He accepts your sin, it is registered in his temple and you go free. That is another view of it and the symbolic one we just read. And we’ll leave it at that point.

But the sanctuary in heaven is going to be cleansed by the same sprinkling of blood but it goes right into the most holy, right? Similarly, your temple is going to be cleansed, but the sprinkling of blood, and we know what that is don’t we? It is the application of the life of Christ which is the Holy Spirit. It is going to go not just only into the holy apartment where the record of sin is kept it’s going to go right into the most holy where your free choice, your allegiance, your independent decision can be made to serve God and your temple is going to be cleansed and the cleansing starts with that decision. That’s when He receives his Kingdom. When you make that decision you are now a subject in his Kingdom and He has dominion over you. Do you see that? And when He gets a hundred and forty four thousand of those He has his Kingdom. I could read you that in this little book too. It’s in here. Should I take time to do it? I get so far off, we go into these side avenues and maybe I’ll lose you.

Here she says it, listen, “Every case had been decided for life or death.” She has just quoted he that is unjust be unjust still, he that is filthy let him be filthy still, and he that is righteous let him be righteous still. That declaration has just gone forth and then she says, by the way, this page 280. Sorry I keep forgetting. “Every case had been decided for life or for death. While Jesus had been ministering in the sanctuary, the judgment had been going on for the righteous dead, and then for the righteous living.” Listen! “Christ had received His kingdom,” And you might want to put down Ephesians 1:18 to refer to at that point. “Having made the atonement for his people and blotted out their sins.


(The end of C/D #47 and the beginning of C/D #48)


The subjects of the Kingdom were made up. The marriage of the Lamb was consummated. And the kingdom, and the greatness of the Kingdom under the whole heaven, was given to Jesus and the heirs of salvation, and Jesus was to reign as King of kings and Lord of lords." Did you get the whole picture there? The marriage was in there, the reception of His Kingdom is in there. The number of the subjects is made up and they share the Kingdom with Him.

(John) And this is before He leaves the most holy place.

(Wilfred) This is before He leaves, yes.

“As Jesus moved out of the most holy place, I heard the tinkling of the bells upon His garment; and as He left, a cloud of darkness covered the inhabitants of the earth.” This is the close of probation. “There was then no mediator between guilty man and an offended God. While Jesus had been standing between God and guilty man, a restraint was upon the people; but when He stepped out from between man and the Father, the restraint was removed and Satan had entire control of the finally impenitent.” God gives final complete control into the hand of Satan over the wicked after probation closes. And you are going to stand in that situation without a mediator and still not flunk out. Do you see the job God has to do for you yet and in you? 

“It was impossible for the plagues to be poured out while Jesus officiated in the sanctuary; but as his work there is finished, and his intercession closes, there is nothing to stay the wrath of God,” I want you to notice that the wrath of God comes through whom?

(John) Satan.

(Wilfred) Satan. “And it breaks with fury upon the shelterless head of the guilty sinner, who has slighted salvation and hated reproof. In that fearful time, after the close of Jesus' mediation, the saints were living in the sight of a holy God without an intercessor.” Could that be any plainer? And if you have any sin my Brother and Sister there is just no two ways about it you could not stand. But I want to give a word of caution here while Christ lays down his priestly robes at this point He does not do it until his people are perfectly sealed and accepted for eternity. Did you get the significance of that statement? If you fail after probation closes you are not the loser. Who is?

(John) Jesus Christ.

(Wilfred) What will be your motive to hang in there tight?

(John) Love for Christ.

(Wilfred) Love for Christ. Do you see how God is going to set up a situation where He can prove before all the universe that you are keeping the Law of Heaven which is self-renouncing love? Can you see that? If He hadn’t done it that way you would be hanging in there for your own sake and Brother you wouldn’t make it. Because there is no power that is strong enough to keep a man from sinning in the face of all the devil’s temptations with no mediator. There is no power strong enough to do that but the power of self-denying love which is the love of God. No other power, your self-interested love would never make it. Try that refrigerator, you keep going to that refrigerator when you decided that you’re not going to do it, don’t you? You could never make it on your love. No way!

(A man in the audience) That’s still a temptation, right?

(Wilfred) Come on now quit your teasing here. Well, should I tell you the truth? It was secretaries week I guess last week or sometime recently and my wife went back to work today and what do you suppose she got, a big box of the most luxurious chocolates you ever saw. And what do you suppose she did with them? She put them right out in front of me. I think I stopped after the third one and it was after I had my supper. Well I’ll tell you one thing moderation and temperance is much harder than abstinence. And God says be ye temperate. So we have got to go the hard route.

“Every case was decided, every jewel numbered.” Every jewel numbered, and He gives the number. And I hope you people don’t get thrown off your feet by the suggestion that that isn’t the number. I can’t see God making a mistake. Can you. At the same time it is symbolic I think in another sense. But the living saints, she says positively are 144,000 in number and here she says they were all numbered. “Jesus tarried a moment in the outer apartment of the heavenly sanctuary,” Where did He tarry?

(John) In the holy place.

(Wilfred) Where was He heading?

(John) Out of the holy place.

(Wilfred) He tarried a moment there “And the sins which had been confessed while He was in the most holy place were placed upon Satan, the originator of sin, who must suffer their punishment.” Tell me why must Satan suffer the punishment of your sins that you confessed since 1844, why?

(John) Because he caused them.

(Wilfred) Good for you.

(Wilfred) Now there is a whole area that I would just love to go into but I cannot do it tonight. For one reason, I am not free to do it, there are minds here that are not prepared for it, I am aware of that and until we are prepared for it I can’t do it. But there is an answer to the problem that is presented here. How come it was the sins that were confessed since 1844 that He paused to put on the head of the scapegoat in the holy apartment? The scapegoat wasn’t even in the Holy apartment. Let me clue you in. The scapegoat never got in there. He was out in the court.

(John) How did the sins get in there?

(Wilfred) And how did they get in there? It doesn’t say they were in there; I would like you to notice. It just says that at that point Jesus stopped to place the sins on the head of the scapegoat. But the scapegoat was outside. So He must have had a method of putting the sins that you have confessed since 1844 on the scapegoat outside. It doesn’t say they were in the holy apartment and that He took them with him out and put them on the head of the scapegoat. It says that He paused a moment in the outer apartment of the heavenly sanctuary and the sins which had been confessed while He was in the most holy place were placed upon Satan, the originator of sin who must suffer their punishment. Now you may interpret her statement “outer apartment” to mean the court, but she does not use it that way as far as I have been able to find. Anytime she talks about the “outer apartment” she is talking about the first apartment or the holy apartment. But you can draw your own conclusions if you want. There is a solution to this problem.

(Larry) Now you’re going to talk about another facet there is also two kinds of probational closings isn’t there? There’s a closing of probation that she gives in another section maybe that’s not in the topic tonight. Those that have had the third angel’s message and have not lived up to all the light, their probation closes. This is at the time of the Sunday law or the national Sunday law. I didn’t know whether we should.......

(Wilfred) That’s perfectly ok that you brought that in, as a matter of fact probation closes not at a specific point of time. When we talk about the close of probation we’re talking about the time when it closes for the last person involved in that category. Because she said right here after 1844 that the people who had heard the message at that time and had rejected it, the door was shut for them. She says that, I haven’t come across that yet but it’s here.

(Larry) This other part has to do with closing the door for those, like all of us know the third angel’s message if we have not fulfilled our obligation to the message then for us the Sunday law will then be the probational closing after the Sunday law has been passed. Those that have not yet been faced with the problem of accepting it or rejecting it will also then at that time have a probationary period which they make up their minds. Once this has been closed then everything is shut off then we come into the time of trouble and everything and we all go through that together.

(Wilfred) You see, the probation for those people who are going to be perfected and who are going to be used of God to give the Loud Cry has already closed before they give the Loud Cry. They are already eternally accepted and sealed.

(Another man in the audience) Then the Holy Spirit will drive them to give the message.

(Wilfred) Yes, constrain them. Constrain them to give the message.

(Same man) Also there is a text Brother Johnson in Matthew 24:15 it says, “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place.” For me ... Unintelligible

(Wilfred) It is, although I think there is more to it. I am not prepared to comment on that right now. But there is something to it.

I still didn’t get the answer to this question, why were these placed upon Satan? And why does He suffer for them

(A woman in the audience) Did you say that they were the sins before 1844?

(Wilfred) No. Sins that were confessed since the door to the holy apartment were shut and that includes all of mine. My sins could not go into the sanctuary the same way that the people who lived before 1844 could and neither could yours because the door is closed. The priest is already in there. We are living in the Day of Atonement the sins are to be cleansed out of the sanctuary not put back in.

(John) Way back in anti-type they couldn’t confess sins on the Day of Atonement. It was too late then. Although they were searching their hearts but they.....

(Wilfred) I should have checked on that. There is a point in connection with that and I forgot to check it.

Yes?

(Same man) You spoke about that particular time in the original ceremony though... and I didn’t quit get it all.

(Wilfred) The sin was transferred by the sprinkling of the blood in the holy apartment

(Same man) You were mentioning during the Day of Atonement.

(Wilfred) The Day of Atonement, the priest went into the holy and shut the door and then he opened the door to the most holy and went in with the blood to the inner sanctuary to cleanse the sanctuary and he sprinkled it in there in some places.

(Same man) There is nothing said about his ... during that time but when he came back out he did something in order to cover the sins at that...

(Wilfred) Nothing is said any place that I can find anywhere.

(Same man) So there is nothing known about the sins of that day, the Day of Atonement?

(Wilfred) I told you at the beginning of the meeting that I don’t believe that Sister White understood it. She just passes over it, she wrote what she saw, and that’s it. And she saw this. Now, I think you should be able to figure out why the devil is going to suffer for these sins, I think you should be able to see that.

Yes, Sister?

(A woman in the audience) Are those the sins of the people who have given their allegiance to Christ but some days they may be overcome but not intentionally but is this different from wilfull sinning?

(Wilfred) Well look, suppose I had eaten twelve chocolates tonight instead of three. Why would I have done it? Do you really think I want to eat twelve chocolates?

(Same woman) Why, sure.

Much laughter

(John) The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.

(Larry) At what point does it become weak? On the twelfth one?

Much laughter.

(Wilfred) Well, am going to throw out my suggestion here and you can accept it or leave it as you will.

It would be unfair for the devil to suffer for my intentional sins if I were the guilty party. It is also unfair for Christ to have to suffer because he’s not the guilty party. But he’s suffering for it now, and I can read you that. He suffers for every sin that you confess. In what sense?

(Larry) That you wound him again every time you sin.

(Wilfred) Yes. How do you do that? What does it do to Him? Other than just hurting him because you aren’t coming around.

(Same woman) Satan accuses Him.

(Wilfred) Satan accuses Him before the universe and belittles Him. Makes fun of Him. Demotes Him. His word isn’t true, He said He would save me and He hasn’t done it. All these years He hasn’t saved me from sin. And yet He said He was going to do it. Well, you see He can’t do it without my decision because He has given me that decision to make. And He is not going to take it away, devil or no devil. Suffering or no suffering. He went to the depths of the crucifixion and what happened before the crucifixion was almost worse than the crucifixion itself in some respects. He did that to preserve my freedom of choice.

Now He says, Johnson, you know what I’ve done for you, would you let me out of this pickle I’m in because of your sins, would you make it possible for me to lay down my priestly robes so that I don’t have to stand here any more and take all this gaff and dirt from the devil? I’ve got to make a decision. The power is available for me to live without sin. I can read that, it’s in the books. It’s the decision that counts. Now if I make the right decision,  I’m out of it. But why don’t I make the right decision? Because the devil comes in through my weaknesses with his big blasts and God permits him to do it. Because God wants to prove to the universe that there is no way Wilf Johnson can live without sin until he gets the power from God to do it with. If he is exposed to the devil he is going to flunk. So the devil is the one that causes it, really. If the devil was taken out of the way right now Wilf Johnson would not sin and neither would you. And that’s the thing that God is going to prove before He leaves the heavenly sanctuary. And when He proves it He has automatically placed the sins that you have confessed since 1844 on the head of the scapegoat. He has proved the scapegoat guilty; He has shown Himself to be innocent and you to be innocent.

(Man in the audience) How’s that again?

(Wilfred) Yes, I know that’s a hard one.

(Larry) How do you prove that the scapegoat is innocent?

(Wilfred) Oh, I didn’t say that.

(Larry) Oh, I thought that’s what you said.

(A woman in the audience) I can’t understand why it would only be from 1844 onward?

(Wilfred) I’m glad that you suggested that. I don’t think anybody else can either.

(Larry) That is the point of the starting of the judgment when He does close that door.

Wilfred) Right. That’s when his people, you see, are being judged and they are either accepted for eternity or rejected for eternity. Your name is either retained in the book or left out. And if it’s retained in the book you are forever covered.

(Same man) So back to the beginning of the testing...

(Wilfred) Right. Now I have been tested on allegiance to God. God knows what my choice is in spite of the twelve chocolates because the moment I get through with the twelve chocolates and I suddenly realize what I’ve done I feel just like what Peter must have felt after he got through swearing that he didn’t know his Lord. Did God reject him? Did God tell Peter who was responsible?

(Same man) Unintelligible

(Wilfred) He sure did. Now I hesitate to say that Peter did not have some responsibility and I also hesitate to say that I don’t have some responsibility, but I am reading from the book and it says that the responsibility is placed on the head of the scapegoat. So if I am responsible he is going to get a double dose.

(Same man) I have another thought on why after 1844 as far as reckoning past, you know? We have a lot more knowledge after this period, a lot more communication, a lot more means by which to spread the truth, a lot more minds know it than ever before because of radio, TV, whatever, I think these things could be related to as this being a time when more people are more responsible than ever before. Do you get what I am trying to say? I didn’t say it very well.

(Wilfred) Yes, I understand what you’re saying. That is we have a greater obligation to accomplish more than people in former times because we have far greater facilities and far better knowledge and understanding than they had.

(Same man) Yes, they didn’t even have near the means to hear and to know and have faith by hearing and all this and they didn’t have the facilities to hear and we have all the responsibilities than any other people, probably forever.

(John) Sister White says it this way; we have the accumulated light of the ages shinning on our pathway.

(Same man) Yes, that’s what I meant to say.

(Another man) We also have Daniel’s open book...

(Another man) Could this be one of the reasons why Satan in the last days is coming with increased power to deceive if possible the very elect because he knows that the more he can deceive the less punishment he would go through?

(Wilfred) Now there is a thought. I hadn’t though about that.

(John) I have often thought about that. The more people he can get into his kingdom the less he is going to have to suffer.

(Wilfred) Because the wicked are going to suffer for their own...

(Same man) And God has put the pressure on him that way; he’s bringing things to a climax.

(Wilfred) The devil is going to suffer for the confessed sins of God’s people in all ages. And yet here she says, since 1844. Now she says it both ways. And I say again like I’ve said many times before, God never makes a mistake. There is a significance in this statement. If there was not a significance it would not have been said. She would have said, He pauses to put on the head of the scapegoat all the sins that have been confessed from all ages. But that is not what she said.

Somebody had a question back there somewhere?

(A woman in the audience) On the Day of Atonement the high priest just went over the sins of God’s people...

(Wilfred) Yes. The sins that have been confessed and transferred... OH! On the Day of Atonement? Yes, Ok.

(Same woman continuing) Because those that didn’t go in they weren’t his people and haven’t been confessed they weren’t in there.

(Wilfred) Well, do yours go in if the door is shut?

(Same woman) This is what I mean, we weren’t even born in 1844.

(John) We’ve been since that time you mean?

(Same woman) Yes, that’s what I mean.

(Another woman) It may have something to do with the book of life where all God’s children are written since that time?

(Wilfred) Yes it does. They’re going through the names in the book of life and when your name goes in the book of life when you accept the Lord, when you accept the message. And He goes through them to verify that you remain in. And the only thing that would erase your name is if you have rejected it, gone out, then your door is closed. Not to say that, and I read that someplace this afternoon, that He doesn’t reject you immediately if you decide to go out, He gives you a period of time to reconsider. But when you finally reject, that’s it, you’re through. Well, if that’s what you’ve done when your name comes up in the judgment then He crosses that name out. And He no longer bears the penalty for your sins, Satan and yourself are going to bear it, yes she says that Satan is going to bear his share of your sins.

(John) Is there a significance in what you are studying, to the statement, and the Bible about some mans sins go beforehand to judgment?

(Wilfred) Yes there is.

(John) Does that tie in?

(Wilfred) Yes.

(John) Then there is another statement that has always puzzled me. Maybe I shouldn’t bring it up, it’s in the Bible though.

Much laughter.

(Wilfred) You can bring it up.

(John) It says it is appointed unto men once to die but after that the judgment.

(Wilfred) Well, I’ll admit I’m building up to something here, I’m laying a foundation because sooner or later you’re going to have to move into an explanation of all these things if you are going to survive or else the devil through his theologians is going to cut you down. You’ve got to have an answer.

(Same woman) If we don’t have an answer does that mean our faith would fail?

(Another man) You’ll question yourself.

(Wilfred) Yes you’ll start to question.

(John) Isn’t there going to be a difference between the depth of understanding that the hundred and forty four thousand have who go through to translation and the great multitude who will be laid away prior to the close of probation?

(Wilfred) Very decidedly.

(John) If some people don’t understand some of these key points it doesn’t mean that they are going to be lost it just means that they may not be a part of that other group.

(Wilfred) When I made that statement I was referring to the hundred and forty four thousand. And I’ll add this, that the differential in understanding of truth is going to cause a shaking among God’s people and it’s going to cause a test of fellowship, brotherly love. Did you get that?

God is going to bring truth into his Church, and I can read it to you, to test his people on the point of brotherly love and his last prayer was that prayer that they all might be one as He is one with his Father. That they might love one another as the Father has love Him and He loved the Father. Do you remember that? Can you love somebody who has an opinion that is diametrically opposed to yours? Can you love somebody that takes one of these statements, and I’m going to read them, I’m going to read one. And can you meet up with somebody who takes the other statement and builds his castle on it and you have yours built on the first one and still be brothers and love one another? That’s a test; I’m telling you that’s a test. But here is what she says in Great Controversy 426; “The coming of the bridegroom, here brought to view, takes place before the marriage. The marriage represents the reception by Christ of His kingdom.” Remember He is going into the most holy apartment. And she says that the coming of the bridegroom takes place before the marriage, well He goes into the most holy place before He receives his kingdom. Now that’s the way she is interpreting the marriage at this point. “The Holy City, the New Jerusalem, which is the capital and representative of the kingdom, is called "the bride, the Lamb's wife." Said the angel to John: "Come hither, I will show thee the bride, the Lamb's wife." "He carried me away in the spirit," says the prophet, "And showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God. Clearly, then,” Now here’s the point “The bride represents the Holy City, and the virgins that go out to meet the bridegroom are a symbol of the church. In the Revelation the people of God are said to be the guests at the marriage supper. Revelation 19:9. If guests, they cannot be represented also as the bride.” Got that? All right, now you say, the church is the guest at the wedding not the bride. Got that?

Now let me read the other side of the picture. And this is why some of these critics come up every once in a while with mimeographed material saying “We’d better get straighten around here we’re kind of a little shady here on some of these things. Maybe our prophet isn’t what she professes to be. She aught to be honest and tell the truth. That‘s what this fellow says, I got a letter here and copies of parts of the letter and I don’t agree with him. See? I take his arguments and the passages that he has and all the rest of it that’s solid and genuine but he is coming to the wrong conclusions. Don’t let contradictions in the Spirit of Prophecy shake your faith in it. These are the keys that unlock the Orions that go on into the spaces of larger truth. Hang on if you can’t understand it, put it on a shelve. Listen, I’m reading from volume 7A SDA Bible Commentary 985, “God is the Husband of His Church.” Listen! “The church is the bride, the Lamb's wife. Every true believer is a part of the body of Christ. Christ regards unfaithfulness shown to Him by His people as the unfaithfulness of a wife to her husband. We are to remember that we are members of Christ's body

And here is another one. “The church is the bride, the Lamb's wife. She should keep herself pure, sanctified, holy. Never should she indulge in any foolishness; for she is the bride of a King. Yet she does not realize her exalted position. If she understood this, she would be all-glorious within.” Isn’t that a statement?

And here is a third one; “The church is the bride of Christ, and her members are to yoke up with their Leader. God warns us not to defile our garments.”

(John) These statements saying the church is the bride and the other one says they cannot be the bride, they are guests, appear to be contradictory.

(Wilfred) Appear to be contradictory, that’s right. They appear to be absolutely contradictory. Now let me tell you. There is a solution. There is a solution. You say Johnson give it to us.

(Another man) How about the hundred and forty four thousand being the Bride the rest of us the guests.

(Wilfred) You hit it right on the head. In a sense the entire church is the bride of Christ, in a sense the entire church are guests.

(Same man) Because their saints and the hundred and forty four thousand would be saints and they would outclass the others.

(Wilfred) But she says that if they are guests they can’t be the bride. And then in another place three times they are the bride and that’s what gets some people down.

Prophet, prophet of God, true prophet, what would you answer?

(John) Back in the Old Testament it says, that the people of the Lord shall be called “The city of the truth”.

(Wilfred) And they are going to have New Jerusalem written in their foreheads. And in Ezekiel 9 she talks about the sealing, going through the midst of Jerusalem and she says that’s the church. So, the church is the bride, the Lambs wife. That follows logically it has to be. But how come she says though, if we are guests we cannot be the bride. It must be two different groups of people. Who are the ones that are married to Christ before the close of probation? The hundred and forty four thousand. Where are the rest of them? Who goes into the marriage and is married?

(John) The hundred and forty four thousand.

(Wilfred) The hundred and forty four thousand. He says, open the door. Open the door to the Laodiceans and I will come in to sup with you. In John 14 He says, The Comforter will come, see? I will not leave you comfortless. We will come to you. We will dwell in you. Don’t you see? They twain shall be one flesh. The marriage union comes to those who are called, chosen, and faithful during the Laodicean period and are over-comers with Christ. They are the ones who go in to the marriage. The others are not there they are in the graves and when they come up they come up to the marriage supper of the Lamb and here on earth to before they are guests, so to speak. They receive the wedding garment and so on. There is an application to them which is somewhat different to the application to the others. And the Bible is full of that type of thing. An application here another application there in a more expanded way.

(John) I just want to say, the one who receives the garment of imputed righteousness the hundred and forty four thousand will receive the full imparted righteousness.

(Wilfred) That’s true. That’s true.

(John) Sister White clearly made a distinction between that there would be two groups in heaven of the redeemed. He was seen going up to the city and He raised his glorious right arm and said only the hundred and forty four thousand enter this place.

(Wilfred) I would like to read a little more here and make a few more comments then we will be through. Page 43 Early Writings.

Those “Who had not kept the true Sabbath, now rest in hope; for they had not the light and the test on the Sabbath which we now have since that door was opened. I saw that Satan was tempting some of God's people on this point. Because so many good Christians have fallen asleep in the triumphs of faith and have not kept the true Sabbath,” And my father was one of them. “They were doubting about its being a test for us now.

“The enemies of the present truth have been trying to open the door of the holy place,” Now if anybody tries to open the door of the holy place who is it? An enemy of the truth. “That Jesus has shut,” Well, I am not so sure that I can just make a blanket answer to that question. I think there is a little more in here, John. If you’re going to try to open that door to the holy place that Jesus has shut you are doing it under the inspiration of somebody other than Christ. So don’t do it. Don’t try to fit in the sanctuary service with an open door in the holy apartment because you’ll be wrong if you do, that door is shut. “And to close the door of the most holy place, which He opened in 1844,” Now don’t try to close that one. You now have the privilege of going into the most holy. I’ll be more specific, you are now living in the time of the latter rain and the latter rain was to come at the end the harvest, near the end of the growing season. Just before the harvest, Testimony to Ministers, to ripen the grain and to prepare it for the sickle. And she says in another place to bring about perfection. So when you go into the most holy place if the door is open to the most holy place, what does it really mean? It means that the door is open now for you not to just come in now and receive imputed righteous and be saved it means that you can now come in and receive imparted righteousness and be purified and made perfect, holy, that’s what it means. And there have been people in our denomination including theologians clear down to Washington and Andrews who have said that door is shut. Not in so many words but they have said that you cannot become perfect until Jesus comes the second time. They made one slip; they should have said, you cannot become perfect until Jesus comes suddenly to his temple in the marriage union to purify and clean the sons of Levi.  If they had said that then they would have been correct. But they didn’t. Now who inspired that doctrine?

(John) Enemies of the truth.

(Wilfred) I had somebody shaking his head at me when I said that not too many days ago. Anybody here that wants to shake your head? The floor is open if you can prove that I am wrong. I’ll be the first one to recant. But do you realize that there are men all over our denomination who are coming out and saying exactly as I am saying. But not quite as loudly on that spot because we don’t what to hurt one another. I have made my mistakes, see? But I want you folks to understand the truth that the devil is trying to bring heresies into our church right through some of our leaders. And God help them to see it and He is also trying to do it through you and me. So we’re no better off. Can we be tolerant? Can we be loving? Can we be kind? Let’s speak the truth and love the brethren anyway. So then. “Where the ark is, containing the two tables of stone on which are written the ten commandments by the finger of Jehovah.”

"Satan is now using every device in this sealing time to keep the minds of God's people from the present truth and to cause them to waver.” And that‘s certainly is true. “I saw a covering that God was drawing over His people to protect them in the time of trouble; and every soul that was decided on the truth and was pure in heart was to be covered with the covering of the Almighty.” Did you notice the condition? Decided on the truth and pure in heart, then you will be covered. 
    
“Satan knew this, and he was at work in mighty power to keep the minds of as many people as he possibly could wavering and unsettled on the truth. I saw that the mysterious knocking in New York and other places was the power of Satan, and that such things would be more and more common, clothed in a religious garb so as to lull the deceived to greater security and to draw the minds of God's people, if possible, to those things and cause them to doubt the teachings and power of the Holy Ghost.” She is talking here about satanic delusions and manifestations of the last days, and she goes on to describe more of them, the false Holy Ghost.

    
“I saw that Satan was working through agents in a number of ways. He was at work through ministers who have rejected the truth and are given over to
strong delusions to believe a lie that they might be damned. While they were preaching or praying, some would fall prostrate and helpless, not by the power of the Holy Ghost, but by the power of Satan breathed upon these agents, and through them to the people. While preaching, praying, or conversing, some professed Adventists who had rejected present truth used mesmerism (Hypnotism) to gain adherents, and the people would rejoice in this influence, for they thought it was the Holy Ghost. Some even that used it were so far in the darkness and deception of the devil that they thought it was the power of God, given them to exercise. They had made God altogether such a one as themselves and had valued His power as a thing of naught.”

“Some of these agents of Satan were affecting the bodies of some of the saints, those whom they could not deceive and draw away from the truth by a satanic influence. Oh, that all could get a view of it as God revealed it to me, that they might know more of the wiles of Satan and be on their guard!” See, if he can’t get you intellectually he will get you physically, that’s what she is saying. “I saw that Satan was at work in these ways to distract, deceive, and draw away God's people, just now in this sealing time. I saw some who were not standing stiffly for present truth. Their knees were trembling, and their feet sliding, because they were not firmly planted on the truth, and the covering of Almighty God could not be drawn over them while they were thus trembling.”

    
“Satan was trying his every art to hold them where they were, until the sealing was past, until the covering was drawn over God's people, and they left without a shelter from the burning wrath of God in the seven last plagues. God has begun to draw this covering over his people and it will soon be drawn over all who are to have a shelter in the day of slaughter. God will work in power for his people; and Satan will be permitted to work also.” 


“I saw that the mysterious signs and wonders and false reformations would increase and spread. The reformations that were shown me were not reformations from error to truth. My accompanying angel bade me look for the travail of soul for sinners as used to be. I looked, but could not see it; for the time for their salvation is past.” Well that was in 1849 that she saw that. 

(Larry) Could I ask one question, Brother?


(Wilfred) Yes. Go ahead.


(Larry) The marriage of the Lamb occurred while He was in the most holy place. A hundred and forty four thousand are on this earth. I am not sure that I fully understand this marriage part while He is in the most holy place.


(Wilfred) Ok, you probably missed the meetings that we had when we discussed that.


Very briefly, it is the coming of the Holy Ghost in Malachi chapter 3 suddenly to His temple as the messenger of the covenant to bring about the fulfillment of the Everlasting Covenant in the lives of the saints today and purify the sons of Levi and make them holy. That coming is a union; she says it here in Great Controversy page 426 that I read at the beginning.


“The coming of Christ as our high priest to the most holy place, for the cleansing of the sanctuary, the coming of the Son of man to the Ancient of Days, in Daniel; and the coming of the Lord to his temple, foretold by Malachi, and the coming of the bridegroom to the marriage are all the same events. And I pointed out that He not only came to the most holy of the temple of heaven but He comes through his Spirit to his temple here on earth to cleanse and purify it and that is the marriage union. The head of the new body of Christ is married to the members in particular of that body. Ephesians I think chapter 4 he talks about that.


(Another man in the audience) Brother Johnson, You mentioned this covering. Do you have any idea of what this covering is?

(Wilfred) Yes, it’s the robe, the wedding garment, the righteousness of Christ. You are covered by his righteousness so that all of your sins are taken care of, forgiven, and you are perfect before God as though you had never sinned and God treats you like He treats his own Son. That’s the covering. But it goes beyond that. And I could read you that from Christ’s Object Lessons but I didn’t bring it tonight and I don’t remember the page. It goes on to say that it is the perfect obedience to the law of God. The imputed righteousness of Christ is only a part of it. It also includes the imparted righteousness and she says; this is what it means to be covered with the robes of Christ righteousness and she’s talking about perfect obedience in that statement. Maybe John can find it; he’s looking there.

(Same man) There is another point on that because I’ve been studying on this, she points out that the health message is very very important at this time. I was wondering if perhaps that’s part of it? Especially when we see all down through the ages how health has been a large point and she points out that it is the right hand of the third angel’s message.

(Wilfred) I can answer that in just one sentence. If you put the wrong chemicals into your body you are disrupting the process of the brain. The brain is an electrochemical factory. It depends for it’s proper functioning on the correct ingredients. If you put the wrong ingredients into the machinery it’s not going to function right. You cannot understand spiritual things, especially the deeper mysteries of God if your mind isn’t clear. And your mind cannot be clear if you put a lot of junk food into your stomach, it’s just that simple. Even if you put too much good food in your stomach. Lots of people think that when they are really hungry and they need all that food and they eat and eat and eat and they get all sorts of symptoms afterwards and wonder why they don’t feel good. It’s very simple. Cut it in half and you won’t have those symptoms.

(Same man) I was brought up to eat only enough to still have a little hunger left.

(Wilfred) Do you know what Sister White says? She says thousands are dying from over-eating. And that’s not just fat people, that’s skinny ones too.

Well listen, “In the parable of Matthew 22 the same figure of the marriage is introduced, and the investigative judgment is clearly represented as taking place before the marriage. Previous to the wedding the king comes in to see the guests, to see if all are attired in the wedding garment, the spotless robe of character washed and made white in the blood of the Lamb.” .... Do you get the picture?

(Larry) Where are you reading?

(Wilfred) Great Controversy page 428.

“He who is found wanting is cast out, but all who upon examination are seen to have the wedding garment on are accepted of God and accounted worthy of a share in His kingdom and a seat upon His throne. This work of examination of character, of determining who are prepared for the kingdom of God, is that of the investigative judgment, the closing of work in the sanctuary above.”

“When the work of investigation shall be ended, when the cases of those who in all ages have professed to be followers of Christ have been examined and decided, then, and not till then, probation will close, and the door of mercy will be shut. Thus in one short sentence, they that were ready went in with Him to the marriage: and the door was shut," Now she seems to have interpreted that to mean the close of probation at that point, but you have to make allowance for the time period during which they are going in, they don’t all go in at once..." ”We are carried down through the Saviour's final ministration, to the time when the great work for man's salvation shall be completed.”

Well there’s much more here. Let me go back just very briefly.

There are two apartments in the sanctuary during the yearly service, the door to the holy apartment is opened but the one to the most holy is shut. The priest carries the sins of the people into the holy apartment and they are recorded in the sanctuary through the sprinkling of blood. The Holy Spirit incidentally is the communicating agent between heaven and earth in addition to the angels. He is the direct link between God and his people. Whatsoever He hears that He speaks. And it is through the sprinkling of that blood that the sins are recorded in the true tabernacle which is Christ. Every sin that you commit, that you come to the sanctuary and confess and ask forgiveness you are crucifying afresh the Son of God. And your sin is being recorded in his temple, He becomes aware and He suffers the consequences of it at that point. Now, don’t ask me for any further details on that, I don’t have them. All I know is that you crucify Him afresh when you do it.

On the Day of Atonement the priest took the blood into the holy apartment and he closed the door and he went and opened the door to the most holy and on into the most holy where he stood before the Ark where the Commandments were and the Sabbath flag was. And these things are made clear to the people and they stand outside afflicting their souls and anybody who did not stand outside afflicting their souls, do you know the penalty was? They were put to death on the Day of Atonement back there.

Now we are to be doing the same thing today. That’s back there in 5 Testimonies for the Churches. Are you doing it? How do you feel about your sins? Do they bother you at all? How do you feel about afflicting Christ and crucifying Him afresh? Does it have any meaning to you? Do you have the vision of love that God has toward you? Have you experienced a share of His sufferings so you find out exactly what you are doing to Him and know what a tolerant and patient and long suffering God He must be to still hang out there and give you several more days and several more years the reason He hasn’t closed down on it is the fact that He knows that you are not ready yet. So he continues to bear it. But He’s pleading and pleading and pleading and He is waiting with longing desire. You should have that statement memorized by now. And when He sees his character perfectly reproduced in his people then He’ll come to claim them. But that will not happen until He comes suddenly to his temple, the real secret rapture, not the spurious one, the real one. He is going to come, secretly, suddenly, to his temple. And one will receive the outpouring of that Spirit and another will not know that he got it. Do you see? One shall be taken and the other left and that is the statement that Sister White applies that passage to. The coming of Christ to his temple. She applies that; one shall be taken the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill one taken the other left. Not going to disappear into space, No, one is going to be selected and will become united in the marriage union and figuratively goes into the most holy with Christ in the sanctuary. And He receives his Kingdom through them because He now has their allegiance. Got it?

Now that takes place since 1844. How do the sins get into the sanctuary since 1844? You read Sister White and it appears that they do, but she explains that this is a testing period and we are being tested on what is in the holy apartment. Formally we were tested on what’s in the holy, what is it? Forgiveness of sins and acceptance in the sight of God as though you had never sinned. Some people find that hard to believe. They can’t believe righteousness imputed. It’s just too good a thing, just can’t possibly be so, they can’t take it, they can’t trust God to believe He has forgiven their sins. They keep worrying about their sins and bring them back up again and having guilt complexes about it. They don’t trust God. That’s the test, do you believe the gospel? The test since 1844 is the Law and Sabbath, allegiance. It doesn’t destroy the former one it builds on it. Without the former you can’t have the second one. I’ve explained that.

But here are mysteries in here. Mysteries that we have not explained. What happens to those sins? How come they are the ones placed on the head of the scapegoat at the end of the probationary period? How does He deal with these sins? Why are they dealt with differently than those confessed before the Day of Atonement and so on? I’ll have to leave it at that point. You just keep asking yourself those questions and keep looking; the solution is in the books.

Yes?

(A woman in the audience) In the statements that you made about one being taken and the other left, where did you take that from?

(Wilfred) I’ll have to find it for you.

(John) That’s in Great Controversy under the chapter; "The Investigative Judgment" where she says, some names are accepted and others are rejected. Is that what she is referring to?

(Wilfred) Yes, but there is a statement in the Bible which says, two women shall be grinding at the mill one will be taken... And she applies that to the coming of Christ to the most holy apartment. But I would have to find it I don’t know right off hand where it is.

(Another woman) Is it not true after probation closes and God’s people stand without a mediator that they still have the Holy Spirit that the Holy Spirit will still be present with these people?

(Wilfred) Very definitely! Because when the Spirit, John chapter 14, When the Spirit comes to his people He will abide with them forever.

(Same woman) So if we know His voice now we will know it then... Unintelligible

(Wilfred) That’s correct. It’s unity between divinity and humanity that keeps us from sin, same as with Christ.

(John) You talked about the covering of Christ being his righteousness that covering that Sister White saw in vision drawing over and that’s found on pages 310 and 311 of Christ’s Object Lessons. She says, by the wedding garments in the parable is represents the pure spotless character which Christ’s true followers will possess and then she says it is the righteousness of Christ, His own unblemished character, that through faith is imparted to all who receive Him as their personal Saviour.

(Wilfred) Did you notice the word “Imparted”?

(John) Over here on the next page she says, only the covering which Christ himself has provided can make us meet to appear in God's presence. Then she goes on to say, This robe, woven in the loom of heaven, has in it not one thread of human devising. Christ in His humanity wrought out a perfect character, and this character He offers to impart to us.

(Wilfred) Excellent, that’s it, Thank you.

(John) And there is the covering that was mentioned in Early Writings. It is the robe of Christ’s righteous, not imputed, imparted.

(Wilfred) You will have perfect obedience to his Law.

(John) But I think in order to get that you must have perfect confidence first that He has accepted you in spite of your sins because you are sorry for them.

(Wilfred) Otherwise your motive wouldn’t be correct.

Well I left you with some problems and questions I know that and...


(The conclusion of this two C/D series on The Open and Shut Door Dilemma)


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